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Christian cop loses appeal — Must attend mosque

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INSANITY! ANOTHER ATTACK ON CHRISTIANITY. DOES ANYONE BELIEVE THEY WOULD EVER FORCE A MUSLIM TO ATTEND A CHRISTIAN CHURCH?

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A panel of federal judges in Denver, in an opinion written by Judge Harris Hartz, found that it is perfectly appropriate for a police chief to order subordinates to attend an Islamic mosque where Muslims “discussed Islamic beliefs, Muhammad, Mecca, and why and how Muslims pray” in addition to encouraging officers “to buy” Islamic books and pamphlets that were for sale.

The ruling came on Thursday from the 10th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in a case brought by Capt. Paul Fields, who had been ordered by Tulsa police officials to either go to a special event at the local mosque himself, or order others to do that.

Fields refused based on religious freedom objections and was punished for that.

The judges on the 10th Circuit panel said that was perfectly appropriate.

“This ruling is troubling on so many levels,” said Robert Muise, of the American Freedom Law Center, which has pursued the case since it developed several years ago.

Captain Paul Fields“We have argued throughout this case that Capt. Fields was summarily punished for simply raising and asserting a religious objection to the order mandating attendance at the Islamic event, and that such discriminatory treatment violates the First and 14th Amendments,” he said. “Yet, inexplicably, the 10th Circuit refused to address this main issue on appeal, claiming that it was not raised below.

“The court is wrong, and we intend to seek full court review of this patently erroneous decision,” he said.

The case was brought by the AFLC on behalf of Fields against Tulsa, Police Chief Chuck Jordan and Deputy Chief Daryl Webster.

The court ruling “noted that Capt. Fields’ briefs asserted that the city’s ‘reason for imposing punishment, or at least the reason for the severity of the punishment, was the religious nature of Fields’ objection to the order.’ The appellate court further noted that ‘there is evidence in the record that would support this assertion. Some statements by TPD officials suggest that at least part of the motive for punishing Fields was that he posed a religious objection to the order and refused to attend the mosque event on religious grounds.’ Yet, the court refused to address the issue on appeal, claiming ‘that it was not preserved in the district court.’ Instead, the court avoided this central issue and simply held, as did the district court, that the order ‘did not burden Fields’ religious rights because it did not require him to violate his personal religious beliefs by attending the event…,’” the AFLC said.

“It is impossible to square the court’s opinion with the briefs and the record presented on appeal. Indeed, even a cursory review of our briefing before the district court and in the appellate court makes clear the basis for Capt. Fields’ constitutional claims: he was singled out for discriminatory treatment and thus punished because he raised a religious objection to the order. That is religious discrimination, pure and simple,” the AFLC said.

The police department executives had promised they would send officers to the mosque for Muslims to talk to them about the Quran, Muhammad and the rest, but were unable to get volunteers. So they issued an order making attend mandatory.

Fields objected, telling officials, “Please consider this email my official notification to the Tulsa Police Department and the City of Tulsa that I intend not to follow this directive, nor require any of my subordinates to do so if they share similar religious convictions.”

Police officials immediately launched an internal affairs investigation which resulted in a two-week suspension for Fields, and a permanent demotion.

“When Chief Jordan was asked directly during his sworn deposition whether it was his ‘understanding that [he] could have accommodated Captain Fields’ religious objections to this event if [he] had made it voluntary for him,’ the chief responded, ‘Yeah. According to his e-mail, yes, I could have,’” the AFLC said.

“The evidence is overwhelming that the city and its senior police officials wanted to make an example of Capt. Fields by harshly punishing him, a Christian, for objecting on religious grounds to an order compelling attendance at an Islamic event,” said David Yerushalmi, co-founder for the AFLC.Even the formal disciplinary statement said, “Capt. Fields was disciplined during this rating period for refusing to attend and refusing to direct that officers attend a law enforcement appreciation day at a local mosque.”

“Consequently, when judges can rewrite the case and the case history to fit the conclusion they seek, as the 10th Circuit has done here, due process is robbed of any meaning,” he said.

“Had a Muslim officer objected to attending a Jewish event to be held at a synagogue on a Saturday and the officer was treated like Capt. Fields, there is little doubt that the entire Tulsa Police Department chain of command would have been fired,” Yerushalmi said.

“As the 10th Circuit acknowledged in its opinion, the undisputed record evidence demonstrated that during the Islamic event, which was held on a Friday – the ‘Sabbath’ for Muslims – the Muslim hosts discussed Islamic religious beliefs; they discussed Muhammad, Mecca, why Muslims pray, how they pray, and what they say when they are praying; they showed the officers a Quran; and they showed the officers Islamic religious books and pamphlets that were for sale and encouraged the officers to purchase them. Moreover, after the event, the Islamic Society posted on its website a photograph of the police officers sitting at a table with members of the mosque with the caption, ‘Discover Islam Classes for Non-Muslims,”‘ AFLC reported.

The AFLC noted that Fields just prior to the religious event, “was one of the primary officers involved with helping to protect this mosque from a criminal suspect intent on doing harm.”

The Tulsa Islamic organization has featured speakers such as Imam Siraj Wahhaj, “a Shariah-adherent Muslim who promotes the destruction of Western civilization and the creation of an Islamic caliphate,” according to the lawsuit.

BY BOB UNRUH ON WND

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About Marianne Bernard

I seek first the kingdom of Christ because everything else in this world is perishing. All that I have is from God who is always faithful. I have worked hard all my life and will continue as long as God lends me breath. The mistakes and bad judgments I made in my life all stemmed from me trying to work things out by myself. I have learned the hard way that the victory over all of my problems and the answers to all of my desires lie solely in my Savior, Jesus Christ.It is now my desire to share the words that God gives me to encourage and give hope to others who need the strength that only faith in Christ can give.

7 comments

  1. They better attend, Otherwise their homes will be burned down in the early hours of the morning.

  2. This is so ridiculous I don’t know where to begin. Another case of throwing a believer in Christ to the wolves while Islam is celebrated. What business does a police department have ordering an officer to go to ANY religious function?

    • Greg, you are so right! Imagine them ordering Muslim officers to go to a Jewish Temple or Christian church. This is just a travesty of our religious freedoms. The bias against Christians is so evident. The injustice just keeps getting worse.

      • Exactly! A police department that did this against a Muslim officer would have it’s head handed to it! But since it is a Christian that is ok. Unfortunately it is only going to get worse.

  3. Christ did warn us that they will hate us because they first hated him. As hard as it is for us to accept what is happening today re Christians, we have to keep reminding ourselves of Christ’s warning. And yes it will be getting worse.

    • Patrice, you are right that Christ warned us of what would happen in ending days. Believers have hope because Christ will work out his plan for our lives. However, it is so sad to watch as this world literally implodes with evil and lies. It is obvious that the enemy from hell is stepping up his agenda to take down as many as he can. It is for that reason we see so many people blinded to sin and headed for destruction. I guess I just never thought that I would see this day. It is here as you said, Patrice. We must continue in the work for the Kingdom as we wait for our Blessed Savior to take us.

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